By Peterson Tumwebaze
The East African Business Council (EABC) is in the process of developing a code of conduct and ethics for businesses aimed at boosting trade in the region.
This will be promoted within the business community in the EAC Partner States and is expected to guide the private sector in provision and acquisition of services across the region, Andrew Luzze, the Executive Director East African Business Council, has said.
The new code of conduct is expected to be ready by April 2015.
“The Code seeks to incorporate key themes that are internationally recognised as basic principles for responsible global citizenship for any business,” he added.
EABC will also organise training for Staff of companies that sign up to the Code to help coordinate business activities including organising the launch of the code of conduct at EAC level by April 2015.
“As a regional private sector lobby and advocacy body, EABC’s success depends on its reputation, integrity and transparency. Both regionally and globally, a clear business case has repeatedly been underscored for businesses to behave in a manner that promotes ethical business practices, transparency and fair competition in the private and public sectors; for the benefit of their companies; the economy, the citizenry and the environment.” Luzze noted.
According to Fiona Uwera, the East African Business Council (EABC) technical liaison officer for Rwanda, the Code of Conduct/Ethics shall ensure compliance with legal requirements and standards of business conduct.
“The Code will set out responsibilities and values to guide business operations and relationships. The business community will be expected to serve as role models by visibly demonstrating support and by regularly encouraging adherence to the set standards,” Uwera told The New Times.
The Code shall guide the conduct of the private sector with respect to provision and acquisition of services from one another, and from businesses facilitating institutions and government
Business community welcomes the initiative
In July this year, EABC was nominated to seat at the World Customs Organisation (WCO), and according to business experts, establishing a code of conduct will help boost competitiveness on the global stage.
Edwin Mwumvaneza, a Kicukiro based business man, said that it very critical for the regional business community to get organized.
“That’s when we shall be able to win the trust of those championing regional integration especially the political leaders,” Mwumvaneza said.
Stephen Byaruhanga, a Risk manager at Eskom Uganda, said establishing a code will help lure investors into the region through joint partnerships.